Study

Practical management of scarce arable plant populations

  • Published source details Pywell R.F., Hulmes L., Meek W.R. & Nowakowski M. (2010) Practical management of scarce arable plant populations. Aspects of Applied Biology, 100, 375-380.

Actions

This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Sow rare or declining arable weeds

Action Link
Farmland Conservation
  1. Sow rare or declining arable weeds

    A randomized, replicated, controlled trial in 2005 and 2007 in Oxfordshire, UK (Pywell et al. 2010), showed that it is possible to establish and maintain new populations of scarce arable plants by combining cultivation and herbicide treatment. Twelve 25 x 14 m plots were cultivated, harrowed and sown with seven scarce arable plant species in October 2005 and monitored after two years in June 2007. Plots annually cultivated in autumn had significantly greater cover and more species of sown scarce arable plants than spring cultivated plots (25-60% cover, >1.5 species/m2 on average for autumn cultivated plots, compared with 10-30% cover and 0.5-1.7 species/m2 for spring cultivated plots). The highest cover by scarce arable plants (average 60%) was in plots cultivated and treated with grass-specific herbicide in autumn. Five sown arable species achieved >1% cover on average in year two. Common corncockle Agrostemma githago and cornflower Centaurea cyanus both increased significantly under autumn cultivation. There were three replicates of each combination of herbicide and cultivation treatments.

     

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